BALTIMORE – A Baltimore police officer has resigned amid controversy.
The officer who was seen in cell phone video striking a man several times and knocking him down over steps on a sidewalk is no longer with the department, police said in a statement late Sunday.
Interim Police Commissioner Garry Tuggle accepted the officer’s resignation, reported Fox News.
The police officer, who was not officially identified, had served on the department for just over a year. He was suspended shortly after the video first surfaced on Saturday.
The second officer involved in this incident has been placed on administrative duties pending the outcome of the investigation.
— Baltimore Police (@BaltimorePolice) August 12, 2018
The other officer in the video is on administrative duties, according to BPD.
The Baltimore Sun reported that police said the incident started after police stopped the man, let go and then approached again.
“When he was asked for his identification, the situation escalated when he refused,” police told the paper. “The police officer then struck the man several times.”
The video begins with the officer standing in front of a man who has his back to a wall. The officer can be seen shoving the man in the chest before he (the officer) began to throw punches.
The man tries to block punches, but doesn’t appear to fight back. The officer who continues to throw punches pushes the man over some steps, and the video ends with the officer on top of him.
Warren Brown, an attorney for the man who was knocked down, identified his client as Dashawn McGrier. Brown said his client faces charges for allegedly assaulting the officer in June. However, McGrier is contesting the charges in court. Brown alleges the officer saw McGrier on Saturday and tried to provoke him as a result of their June encounter.
“He is charged with assaulting that officer then, and so here this officer now is like, you know, going after him,” Brown said.
Brown said he has scheduled a Monday news conference to discuss plans for filing a complaint against the officer.
“It is just an act of police brutality that was unwarranted, and it just does nothing for police-community relations,” Brown said. “It does nothing to lower crime. My client was not involved in any criminal activity. It’s just gratuitous violence that’s unnecessary and does no good for the city.”
Brown said his client was being treated in a Baltimore hospital. Brown said McGrier “may have suffered a broken jaw, a broken nose, maybe some fractured ribs, and he had difficulty with feeling his left leg, although before I left he did say that he was beginning to get the feel back in his foot, left foot.”
In a news release, police said the man was not criminally charged and has been released from custody.